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Nate Chapnick | Photo: Courtesy Image | December 5, 2013
Audi’s reimagined supercar, the 2014 R8 V10, offers one of the most thrilling rides on the road.
Even for a rarefied supercar, Audi’s redesigned 2014 R8 V10 is singular in every way. Its low, wide shape is distinctive, bordering on alien, with full-LED headlamps adding to its otherworldly aura. Massive air intakes borrowed from Audi’s Le Mans-winning race cars, meanwhile, feed oxygen into the R8’s midmounted V10 engine—set under glass as if it were a world-class watch in a showcase.
Step inside and Audi’s record-breaking Le Mans heritage is on full display with a flat-bottom steering wheel and snug, low seats. Sculpted around the driver, the R8’s monoposto interior design incorporates a high center console, making controls easily reachable. From the leather-wrapped instrument panel to the museum-quality knurled aluminum gearshift knob, the materials evoke Audi’s painstaking attention to detail. And the standard 465-watt Bang & Olufsen sound system is a luxurious accompaniment to the R8’s symphonic engine.
Of course, it’s that 525 horsepower V10 that makes the R8 a genuine supercar. Audi’s Quattro all-wheel drive system transfers power for remarkable grab off the line, which also makes the R8 a true four-season vehicle. Add the $9,100 optional S tronic transmission with Launch mode, and the R8 smashes the 0 to 60 mph run in 3.4 seconds. Thanks to Quattro and a near perfect 44:56 front-to-rear weight distribution, the R8 offers seemingly endless grip through corners, making it as comfortable slingshotting onto a freeway as it is scampering up a mountain switchback. Stopping power is equally outstanding, improved for 2014 with new brake discs that reduce weight and stay cool under hard stops.
There are probably other luxury cars in which outstanding mechanics and cutting-edge design gel as remarkably as they do in the R8—we just can’t think of any.
2014 Audi R8 V10
Base price: $151,200
Engine: 5.2-liter V10
Transmission: 6-speed manual standard
Horsepower: 525 hp @ 8,000 rpm
Torque: 391 lb.-ft. @ 6,500 rpm
Maximum cargo capacity: 3.5 cu. ft.
City fuel economy: 13 mpg
Highway fuel economy: 22 mpg
Fuel tank: 23.8 gal.
Weight: 3,737 lbs.
0 to 60 mph: 3.4 seconds
Top Speed: 195 mph
Fab FeaturesFour-season use with Quattro AWD Visually stunning engine displayed under glass Full-LED headlights Diamond-stitched Nappa leather seats